We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Mrs. BD has been traveling around Normandy with her Dad for the past week. Yes, they did it the high-end way.
Wherever they went, people walked up saying things like "Thank you, Americans, for what you did for us." Europeans of all types from all counties (not Germans) showing gratitude to Americans.
Very moving, obviously. Story goes that the old guy was too young to join the army. He lied about his age, but the recruiters phoned his Mom to check. His two older brothers were in the war (one on Omaha Beach), and both survived and went on to great educations, great careers, with fine families.
Photo is Mrs. BD's Monkfish supper last night in a tiny seaside port in Normandy. She says they poached it right, tender, juicy, delicate, and not chewy as in the US. Those French know how to cook.
Mrs. BD has been traveling around Normandy with her Dad for the past week.
Wherever they went, people walked up saying things like "Thank you, Americans, for what you did for us." Europeans of all types showing gratitude to Americans.
My impression is that while there is definitely anti-Americanism in France, its greatest prevalence is in the urban, interleckchul crowd.
Back in the '70s, I spent several weeks with some French tourists in Colombia and Ecuador. Ann Marie told me that some fellow Frenchmen had visited the US. As was fairly common at the time, her paisans got around the US by hitchiking. She told me that Americans who gave rides to her hitching paisans often invited them to spend the night in their homes. [That was also my experience as a hitcher.]. She told me that there was something sick about Americans, that they would be so friendly to strangers.
Oh well. Of course, when the French experienced Germans knocking on THEIR doors, one can understand why French might be more standoffish towards strangers than Americans are- or were. Though I suspect that absent WW2. the French would still have a similar attitude towards strangers. Very little hitching these days.
I have been to Normandy many times. I have never had a local say anything other than how deeply they appreciate the sacrifices of D-Day. Last time I visited the cemetery at Omaha Beach, it was crowded with French school children placing flowers on the graves of "adopted" U.S. soldiers. They are taught the bravery of our men. It is very moving.
Christopher C Allen
That has been our experience as well. Pleasant, interested, engaged and polite people - like most places we’ve traveled -until one gets to cities. Then the rude stereotypes prevail. In Normandy we always enjoy seeing people raking for shellfish - and then seeing the same critters on the platters. Moules and langoustine everywhere for me and tarte tatin for my husband. Calvados for us both. If he has business is France, I travel with him and we head that way.
The wife has had the same experience with the country people. One time a woman even shared her lunch with my wife and her daughter after they asked her a question. OTOH She says Parisians hate everyone.
As for the monkfish, she says it tastes just like lobster.
The wife says, "OMG do they know how to cook!" __________________
Bet that if you went to a restaurant in the US, where they cooked in the same style (Scratch-made from superior, fresh ingredients, nothing canned or pre-made, lightly seasoned and always slightly under-cooked!) you'd have the same taste experience---minus the "3,000 miles from home" magic.
And you'd end up complaining about the prices because of the $15/hr minimum wage kitchen help and the lack of care in service!
This brought back memories of my (solo) trip to Normandy in the 1980s. I was in the seaside town of Honfleur and sat outside at a small restaurant and ordered the monkfish, which came in a calvados-spiked cream sauce. It was one of the most delicious fish dishes I can remember ever eating.